If you have been following along with the 1993 series "The Practice Sessions", here's something different to mark this Martin Luther King Day in 2007. This recording was done at Blue Moon Studios for the 1993 tape release titled "Animal Called the Blues". It's a one-off copy of a live mix that was dubbed a bit too low (my other tape of it is too hot and clips). Anyway, it came down to this song or It's a Man's World - both powerful songs to showcase Charles' tremendous voice; maybe we should have included both. Chuck Allen was the recording engineer at the studio. Nice place, originally built by Butch Trucks (as in Allman Brothers as in Duane as in buddy of Charles) and now owned by FSU Film School (where Chuck works, to complete the Tallahassee circle). I'm guessing about the actual date of the recording since the studio records and 24 track master tapes are long gone. Other MP3 from this release can be found at Charles Atkins Blues Band
A note on the Blues Boys:
This is the original lineup when I first met Charles and the band. I was a friend of Larry, interested in the music, handy with a Mac for flyers and graphics, and somewhat able to listen and understand when they made me the soundman. The Blues Boys were all about the same age with Charles being 6-8 years older.
Chuck White was the first to leave, a casualty of the Blue Moon sessions, guess his timing was off. But it was alright by him since gigging was just a way to hang out, drink beer, and eye the chicks. Pre-Charles, the band was known as White Boys Blues Band.
Stretch Evans was OK but we had to pay him; everyone else was gigging for free while spending the little we made in the studio. Stretch and Harty were made for each other, constantly wheedling back and forth. On stage, Harty might be talking between songs and Stretch knew just when to snap a rim and make Harty twitch. Great stuff!
Bernie Powers moved to Jacksonville Beach at some point. He would come back over for a Friday gig, studio Saturday, and then maybe another gig Saturday night. And he got us gigs over at the beach a couple times. He eventually got frustrated over the studio effort, that we were spending too much for what was first intended to be a demo to promote Charles. Harty was mostly pushing this, and everything else. Within a year he pushed Tom out, not intentionally, but he could really wear you down. Without Tom, we lost the great practice room where Charles had been developing all those songs in 1993. Larry hung on for awhile but he lost his zest for it and by late 1994, with my personal life in turmoil, I also had my fill of Harty and backed away from helping Charles. It had been an incredible 2 years of music and fellowship.
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